http://blogs.zdnet.com/BTL/?p=8828

Comcast has acquired Plaxo in a reported $150mm – $170mm deal that represents Comcast’s latest move in building their Web 2.0 Portfolio.

Comcast also acquired Fandango in April of last year.

What does all of this mean?

Personally, I think it represents a commitment on Comcast’s part NOT just to provide the pipe, but to provide the destination, which is a necessity for old economy telecommunications companies. Internet pipe isn’t an overpriced luxury, it’s a commodity. In an industry like this, how do you differentiate yourself?

It also once again provides an yet another validation for the idea of social networking.

Who’s next? What’s next?

Well, what’s next is that we’re going to see more and more companies using these targeted online social media strategies to shore up their lagging traditional advertising effectiveness.

Look at General Motors— third largest advertising company in the US, shifting half of their ad spend ($1.5billion) to online advertising. It’s a brave new world. As a friend of mine calls it, “A microwave society with ADD”.

May’s issue of Fast Company has an article about “Ning” that I found really fascinating. Check it out here.

Excerpt:

Here’s something you probably don’t know about the Internet: Simply by designing your product the right way, you can build a billion-dollar business from scratch. No advertising or marketing budget, no need for a sales force, and venture capitalists will kill for the chance to throw money at you.

The secret is what’s called a “viral expansion loop,” a concept little known outside of Silicon Valley (go ahead, Google it — you won’t find much). It’s a type of engineering alchemy that, done right, almost guarantees a self-replicating, borglike growth: One user becomes two, then four, eight, to a million and beyond. It’s not unlike taking a penny and doubling it daily for 30 days. By the end of a week, you’d have 64 cents; within two weeks, $81.92; by day 30, about $5.4 million.”

How are YOU planning to reach your customers and prospects?

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